• YA Contemporary Book Reviews

    The Place Between Breaths

    Grace, in turn, does her part, interning at the lab in the gene sequencing department daring to believe that one day they might make a breakthrough…and one day they do. Grace stumbles upon a string of code that could be the key. But something inside of Grace has started to unravel. Could her discovery just be a cruel side effect of the disease that might be taking hold of her? And can she even tell the difference? I expected this book to be a quick read and while the writing style is engaging I ended up taking my time to absorb this novel to try and understand the events that…

  • Horror Book Reviews

    The Sign of the Beast

    What I admire most about Oates’ brand of suspenseful horror is that she truly understands the predatory nature of people. Mrs. S—— is definitely the predator in this case, taunting and teasing Howard mercilessly, making inappropriate comments about his physical development. The story seems very straightforward, that this Sunday school teacher is dressing provocatively to entice young Howard, but by the halfway point my assumptions were challenged. Similar to Miao Dao, The Sign of the Beast deals with the confusion and shame that comes with puberty and the sexual awakening of an adolescent. Howard feels embarrassed about the way he’s treated by Mrs. S—— yet finds himself desiring her sexually.…

  • Horror Book Reviews

    Miao Dao

    Of the Dark Corners stories I’ve read so far I can tell already that Miao Dao will probably be my favorite and is by far one of the strongest entries in the series. I thought I knew what I was getting into when I picked this novella up – thinking it’d be a story about a supernatural killer cat, but what I got was so much more. To me there are two distinct schools of horror – those that are pure fantasy, usually monsters or some other form of paranormal activity; and then there is the kind of horror that is grounded in the real world, the type of every…

  • Thriller Book Reviews

    Lies She Told

    I have a serious issue with book descriptions that feel like they give away too much of the plot and it was definitely the case with this book. I had a feeling I knew how the book would go from reading the synopsis alone and I was fairly sure of my prediction not even halfway through the book. The story is extremely predictable, even with the author’s attempts to throw the reader off the trail, and that sort of ruins half the fun of reading a mystery novel. Even without reading the synopsis the story is still fairly easy to guess, but it might not be the case for everyone…

  • Japanese Horror Book Reviews

    Audition

    Audition may just be one of the fastest reads I’ve had all year, finishing in just under 24 hours. The story follows an aging widower named Aoyama, who holds an audition to find a new bride. The narrative focuses in on Aoyama’s feelings of loneliness after the loss of his wife, his relationship with his son, how he copes with aging, and his delusional romance with a young woman named Asami. Let’s be clear about one thing: Aoyama is not a nice man. It’s odd that many reviews talk about what a nice man he is because he has a good relationship with his son and seems to love Asami,…

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